Pet owners are worried about the increasing costs of basic healthcare for their pets
Pet owners in Ireland who took part in a Europe-wide survey conducted by Agria, a leading European pet insurer, expressed concern about the cost of owning and caring for pets. According to the survey data, the most difficult expenses for pet owners were veterinary visits and pet food. Despite this, 30% of pet owners would prefer to reduce their household expenses rather than give up their pets.
In the survey, approximately one-quarter of pet owners expressed concerns about their ability to provide basic needs for their pets in the future. If the situation worsens, nearly half may consider relocating their pets with a family member or friend. Almost a quarter would surrender their pet to a rescue or rehoming centre.
“More than 40% of pet owners believe they will be unable to care for their pets in the next 12 months. That is concerning because most pet owners do not want to give up their pets voluntarily. We believe that pet insurance is one way a pet owner may be able to handle this issue.” says Bernard O’Sullivan, Managing Director of Agria Petinsure Ireland.
The most serious concern is the cost of veterinary care
Three out of every four pet owners are concerned about rising veterinary costs, which is most likely why animal insurance is near the bottom of the list of possible areas for cost savings. Many people consider comprehensive insurance a form of protection in difficult times, and a policy with fewer benefits or a lower level of coverage is preferable to none.
Only 10% of dogs and 5% of cats in Ireland have insurance, which is extremely low compared to other European countries such as Sweden, where around 90% of pets are insured.
Purchase pet food in bulk to save money
Pet food is an ongoing cost for all pet owners. More than half pet owners consider pet food the second most concerning expense. It is also an expense that most pet owners believe they can cut costs on if done correctly. A tip for lowering the cost of pet food is joining forces with other pet owners and making larger bulk purchases. Wholesale pet food is usually less expensive.
The survey in brief:
- Approximately 80% of survey respondents believe pet ownership has become more expensive.
- According to the survey, more than 90% of pet owners say pet food has become more expensive, 75% believe veterinary bills have increased, and 25% believe grooming costs have increased.
- Approximately 30% of survey respondents would rather cut down on other household expenses than the costs of their pets.
- Over 40% of pet owners believe they cannot care for their pets in the next 12 months.
- If they experienced financial difficulty, more than 50% of respondents said they would give their pet to family or friends.
The research company Xtreme conducted the study on behalf of Agria in February 2023.
812 dog and cat owners participated in the survey.